The installation of a kitchen island has become more and more popular to homeowners. No matter how big or small a kitchen is, there’s always room for a kitchen island as it becomes an icon for modern kitchens. If you’re upgrading or remodelling your kitchen to include an island, here are some pointers to consider.
The Functionality of a Kitchen Island.
Islands need to be functional to take advantage of the space they occupy. There are so many things that you can do on a kitchen island and these functions can help you guide how to design your own.
· Refrigerator and cooktop
· Electrical outlets for kitchen appliances
· Access to rubbish disposal bin
· Stainless sink and wood counters for slicing and chopping
· Heat-resistant and scratch-free countertops (stainless steel, tile, or stone)
· Overhead vent hood for smoke-free cooking
· Space for cooktop or range
· Dishwasher nook
· Pull-out garbage disposal bin
· Easy access to cookware, dish, and silverware
· Storage for cleaning implements
· Extra hidden counters to hide dirty dishes
Remember that kitchen islands hog too much space. For measurements, a kitchen island should be at least 4 feet long and 2 feet wide. It should have enough space around for people to work and move. If your kitchen won’t be able to accommodate this size, it would be more practical to create a counter top on the sides or corners of the kitchen.
Different Styles for Kitchen Islands.
Kitchen islands are available in a wide variety of designs, shapes, and sizes depending on your needs. Most homeowners would like their islands the centerpiece of their kitchens. Typically, the materials used in building a kitchen island should match the interiors of the kitchen, from the worktops to the finish of the cabinet doors and shelves.
A kitchen island is typically designed in U, L or G shapes. But you are free to customize with your preferred shape. The trend today is the use of round kitchen islands and semi-circular worktops for a more modern look and feel.
What’s good about having a kitchen island is that it provides additional storage spaces in your kitchen. You can take advantage of the space underneath the countertop and create shallow cabinets for serving items like cutlery, bowls, platters, etc. You can also install drawers where you can place items needed for your food prep. A kitchen island can also accommodate additional storage spaces for small appliances like mixers and food processors. Storage spaces underneath a kitchen island would depend on how big your island is. Wider kitchen islands can even accommodate major appliances like a dishwasher, an oven, and a freezer.
Lighting and Ventilation.
When planning a kitchen island, you must not forget to include lighting and ventilation fixtures. Where there’s activity, there’s a need for light. If you’re using your island for food prep and cooking, you need dedicated lighting. The most common choice for this purpose is the use of recessed lighting. They are easy to install but may be tricky if you have high ceilings. But this can be solved by using fixtures that allow you to place lighting bulbs closer to your kitchen island. One option is to use pendant lights that can freely hang from the ceiling. Make sure that switches are easily accessible from where you’ll work in the kitchen.
If your kitchen island is dedicated to cooking, ventilation is a must. The most common ventilation system is the use of a downdraft fan from behind the cooktop although most cooktops today have fans installed on them. If you need additional ventilation, you can install an exhaust fan directly mounted on to the ceiling. Another option, albeit an expensive one, is to have an overhead hood custom-built and finished for your kitchen.
Indeed, having a kitchen island adds functionality and a more modern look to your kitchen. When planning on getting one, make sure to consider these tips. There are so many options to choose from and you may be overwhelmed by the variety of choices you have. Always keep in mind that functionality should come first before aesthetics. It will be a lot easier to decide on the smaller details later on once you’ve decided on what purpose your kitchen island will serve.